‘Poorly led’ St Leonards blind care home in special measures


A ‘poorly led’ care home for the blind in St Leonards has been put in special measures after being told to improve by the health watchdog.

Healey House was rated overall as ‘requires improvement’ by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) in a report published on August 19, the second lowest possible score.

But the Upper Maze Hill nursing home, ran by Hastings and Rother Voluntary Association for the Blind (HRVAB), was placed in special measures for being rated as ‘inadequate’ in ‘well-led’.

It was deemed to be caring but not consistently safe, responsive or effective, based on the inspections on June 30, and July 1.

Healey House was given the same overall rating in July, 2015, and the pledge to address the concerns raised then had not been fulfilled with ‘further work was needed to embed and ensure safe and good practice in all areas’.

“The registered provider had not identified a number of areas which had not met regulatory requirements,” the report says.

“Records were not in place to underpin appropriate levels of care for people and support for staff.

“Good governance had not been maintained to ensure that the service had continued to be well run in the absence of a registered manager.

“Healey House did not have a robust system in place to continually assess and monitor the quality of service provided.

“Some areas identified in the last inspection had not been addressed by the provider.”

Healey House provides accommodation and personal care for up to 28 older people, with 22 in the home during the inspections and a number of them had a visual impairment.

People were complimentary about the meals provided and told the inspectors the food was of a ‘high standard’, with dietary needs being catered for and lots of choice.

Activities were provided and people said they enjoyed socialising at the day centre and the recent trips out that had been organised, plus the access to talking books, speaking clocks and other aids to assist them due to their visual impairment.

The purpose of special measures is to ensure providers significantly improve meaning Healey House will be inspected again within six months and kept under review, with the ability to take ‘urgent enforcement action’.

HRVAB chief executive Fieona Farrier-Twist said while the report is disappointing, Healey House has a new manager in post and the CQC said the care at Healey House is good.

“We are working closely with the CQC and are confident that we will soon be fully meeting the requirement,” she said.

Don’t miss out on all the latest breaking news where you live.

Here are four ways you can be sure you’ll be amongst the first to know what’s going on.

1) Make our website your homepage at www.hastingsobserver.co.uk/ 2) Like our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/hastingsobserver

3) Follow us on Twitter @HastingsObs

4) Register with us by clicking on ‘sign in’ (top right corner). You can then receive our daily newsletter AND add your point of view to stories that you read here.

And do share with your family and friends - so they don’t miss out!

The Hastings Observer - always the first with your local news.

Be part of it.